The Montreal Carabins are going to play for the U SPORTS Men’s Soccer Championship, after upsetting the UBC Thunderbirds 2-0 in Friday’s championship semifinal at Hillside Stadium.

The Thunderbirds pressured the Carabins from the opening kickoff but it was Montreal who drew first blood.

In the 17th minute, Frederic Lajoie-Gravelle received a through ball from Aboubacar Sissoko, then chipped a shot from the top of the box that went over the charging UBC keeper Chad Bush and into the empty net.

The Carabins carried the 1-0 lead into the second half.

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Montreal added another goal in the 80th minute as Johnathon Makaya took the ball from Mouad Ouzane and went to the right side of the net and tucked it in for his second marker of the national tournament.

My boys worked really hard. We had the right game plan. UBC is a fantastic soccer program. They are well coached. They are the best of the country. We had the right game plan and stuck to it. They put their heads down and did the work necessary to beat a champion like UBC.

Pat Raimondo – Montreal head coach

UBC head coach Mike Mosher said this loss was a learning experience.

“They came a long ways in the last couple of weeks,” he said. They found out how to grind and battle in Canada West and get results. This is the biggest learning experience for this young group.”

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Mosher adds the future looks bright for the Thunderbirds.

We will use this tournament, this playoff run and the season as a learning experience. We are the hosts next year. I anticipate our entire team back. We have a graduating keeper but we hope he still might be back for next year. In terms of our depth and quality, we will be better.

Mike Mosher – UBC head coach

The Carabins will move to Sunday’s championship final at 5 p.m. ET/ 2 p.m. PT against the winner of the other semifinal between the host Thompson Rivers WolfPack and Cape Breton Capers. The Thunderbirds will meet the loser of that match for the bronze medal at 2:00 p.m. ET/11:00 a.m. PT on Sunday.

Saturday’s lone match is the consolation final which will be an all-OUA affair with the Carleton Ravens meeting the York Lions.  Kickoff on Remembrance Day will be 4:30 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. PT

Players of the Game:

  • UBC: Mackenzie Cole
  • Montreal: Grayg Noireault


Consolation Semifinal 2: Lions top Citadins to advance to consolation final

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 Joey Cicchillo scored midway through the second half and Jonathan Lao added an insurance marker, leading the York Lions to a 2-0 victory over the UQAM  Citadins in the second consolation semifinal at the 2017 U SPORTS Respect Group Men’s Soccer Championship on Friday.

The match started like the previous consolation semifinal (a 4-3 Carleton win over UNB) with both teams getting scoring chances early. The Citadins tested York keeper Mike Argyrides in the first few minutes before the play came down the other way and UQAM keeper Valetin Lamoulin was forced to punch away a Cicchillo offering five minutes in.

The teams were scoreless after the first half.

In the 54th minute, York’s Milan Beader was left alone on the right side of the UQAM net but he hit the side.

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The Lions got on the board in the 74th minute as Cicchillo was able to drive to the goal, dipsy doodle around two sprawled defenders and the keeper and easily stuck it in the yawning cage.

“This goal was similar to the one I scored in the OUA finals,” Cicchillo laughed afterwards. “This one was a little tighter corners. It was a beautiful team goal. I couldn’t have done it without the other guys.”

In the 82nd minute, Cicchillo got another great chance and raced down the left side only to have his legs pulled out from under him by UQAM’s Hamza Methamen. On the ensuing penalty kick, Lao was able to sneak the ball low left side to give York an insurmountable 2-0 lead.

Cicchillo said it was imperative for his team to rebound emotionally after Thursday’s 1-0 quarter-final defeat at the hands of the host Thompson Rivers Wolfpack.

“For all the senior guys, coming out here could have been our last match. For the younger players it was a chance for them to prove themselves. What happened last night happened. The difference tonight was that in this one we would be able to play our game. We didn’t rush things.”

The consolation final on Saturday will be an ‘all-OUA affair with York meeting Carleton. Kick-off is 4:30 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. PT.

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Players of the Game

  •  York: Joey Cicchillo
  • UMAQ: Chakib Hocine